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The Smart One

FROM THE AUTHOR’S WEBSITE…”Bev Bloomrosen thinks her sisters see her as a loser. Not that she minds being the Smart One, but she can’t imagine she’ll ever live up to her family’s expectations … especially since she left behind her artistic ambitions-along with her humor-impaired ex-husband-to pursue a career as a “mere” schoolteacher.  But her sisters have their own image problems. Clare, the Pretty One, married well and seems to have the perfect suburban life, yet worries that the paper thin fabric of her beautiful designer world is ripping apart. And Joey, the Wild One who had 15 minutes of fame as a one-hit-wonder rock star, struggles with sobriety and keeping the secret of her weirdest ambition yet.  They love each other but mix like oil, water, and hundred-proof gin . . . a combination that threatens to combust over family tensions, suspected infidelities, a devastating accident, a stunning confession, and the sudden reappearance of their handsome, now all-grown-up former neighbor, Kenny Waxman, who’s back in town making his mark as a TV comedy writer.  It seems they’ll never understand where their differences begin and their own destructive tendencies end. Then it happens: the sisters discover a decades-old body stuffed inside an industrial drum and begin a bold, heartbreaking, and sometimes hilarious journey that will either bring them together . . . or tear them apart for good.”

FROM THE BOOK FAERY REVIEWS…I am not sure how I missed Ellen Meister’s part of the back of the book of “The Smart One” when it mentioned “decades-old pregnant body in an industrial drum”…but I sure did until I got to the part in the book.  That was probably because like most people, I skimmed the back because I was engrossed in the book cover!  All I REALLY read on the back was the part about three sisters leading different lives and I couldn’t help determining which cupcake or apple was who (and now I want to ask Ellen myself if the cupcake with the flower was Clare, the plain cupcake (which still kind of stumps me) was Joey, and apple was Beverly)!  What kills me is that I’m ALWAYS telling people that you can never judge a book by its cover, and look what I’ve done.  Here I am thinking I’m reading a light “chic lit” once again and boom it’s deeper than that.  After reading the book and recalling through events, I realized that the book wasn’t REALLY about the 20 year old murder but about the sisters themselves as individuals and as a family unit and their unconditional love and support for the other. In addition, I also realized what love can make you and other people do in situations. 

In the beginning I was mad at Kenny’s dad Sam for “murdering” this pregnant woman after discovering he had had an affair with her.  In fact I wanted to cuss this old man out when Beverly (Bev) summed up the courage to go into his hospital room to find her father (who wasn’t even in there).  Then I was even more enraged when he was telling others to let her burn in the car fire that HE caused!  Talk about fuming!  But then I couldn’t help but wonder in the end if my own marriage’s love was that unconditional as Kenny’s parents.  Would my own husband love me enough to take the blame for a crime that I had committed (course I hope that NEVER occurs) because of his love for me and of course the heavy guilt he may have felt for hurting me terribly?


Going back to the three sisters, I, like many, will try to figure out which sister I had more in common with.  Was I like Bev who was labeled as the “Smart One” only to feel like a failure in everything she seemed to explore in order to figure out who she was because nothing seemed good enough?  Was I like Clare, the “Pretty One” who seemed to have the “perfect” family, home, and most importantly marriage?  But to only feel unappreciated at home and afraid to approach her husband about the possible affair he had only to find love and attention elsewhere from another man as a sort of internal revenge?  Or was I like Joey, the “Wild One” who seemed to always live life on the edge with such great talent but to allow it to spiral her down until she was given a second chance at life?  Then I thought, perhaps I was a bit of all, like perhaps many who read it may feel?


I am a fan of books about relationships and self-discovery and overall I thought this was a great book and would recommend this book to someone else who may have had doubts in their own life.  Thanks Ellen for sending me an early reviewer’s copy of the book.  It was a book I began one afternoon and couldn’t put down until 3:30 the next morning…and now here it is at 3:55 am and I’m posting my review! LOL


3 Responses

  1. Wow. You sure know how to knock a writer’s socks off. Thanks so much for this great review. So glad you saw past the “chick lit” image and opened up to the relationships in the story. Hugely gratifying to me. Appreciate the astute and careful read!


  2. I was thinking about the cover art too.

    I eventually settled on the one with the flower being Joey. (She likes her plants does our Joey)

    The one in the middle as Bev, the main protaganist in centre stage, and also the middle sister.

    That leaves the apple on the right representing Clare. Seems appropriate as it’s a good looking full-bodied fruit.

    They’re in ascending age order from left to right that way too.
    Seems logical

  3. […] stops on the blog tour:   Mom Is Just A Nickname, Virtual Wordsmith, Musings From The Mitten, The Book Faery Reviews, Maw Books, Fighting With Writing, Book Room Reviews, Presenting Lenore and Anything That […]

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